Samson Cree Nation member earning acclaim for bullfighting abilities

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By Sam Laskaris, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Windspeaker.com

Kris Buffalo spends his days working as an educational assistant in the Alberta city of Wetaskiwin.
Buffalo’s other job, which he fulfils on many weekends throughout the province and at times in the United States, is much more dangerous.
The 34-year-old Samson Cree Nation member is a bullfighter, who must keep his composure even while coming face-to-face with an upset animal weighing as much as 2,000 pounds.
In rodeo, it’s the bull riders that get the majority of the attention. They are the ones who mount a bucking bull and do their best to stay upright while being tossed around in various directions often to the cheers of entertained fans.
Whn the bull manages to knock off a competitor, that’s when bullfighters like Buffalo jump into action.
“My job is distracting the bull,” he said. “I try to get the bull going in the other direction to get his (attention) away from the participant.”
Bullfighters were previously also called rodeo clowns. They would dress up in elaborate costumes to not only provide a distraction for the bulls, but to provide comic relief for spectators.
“I come from a rodeo family and the rodeo clown was always a glamorous type of job,” Buffalo said.
Bullfighters work in teams of three, operating in unison to provide safety for...continued.

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